DZLU MEETING DATE: September 18, 2018
1. ONGOING PROJECT UPDATES:
a. WHOLE FOODS 365 AT 1600 JACKSON — The Planning Commission’s Conditional Use hearing has been continued from 7/26 to 10/4. The meeting starts at 1:00 in Rm 400, City Hall. RHN has sent another letter to the Commission expressing its strongest support for the project. Though public testimony has been closed, RHN has issued an eblast with a call to action to attend the hearing to show support by our presence and to send new letters to the Commission.
PLEASE SEE ELSEWHERE IN THE RHN WEBSITE FOR THE FULL CALL TO ACTION REGARDING THE WHOLE FOODS 365 PROPOSAL
2. ONGOING POLICY UPDATES:
a. HISTORIC DESIGN GUIDELINES — SF Planning is in the initial stages of developing Historic Design Guidelines (HDG) that will apply to historic resources in San Francisco and public outreach has begun. Planning has invited interested neighborhood associations to meet to receive input and DZLU has offered its availability over the next three months. DZLU has established a subcommittee of five to focus on this issue.
Subsequent to our meeting, DZLU has scheduled its meeting with Planning for 11/20.
b. DEMOLITION CONTROLS — A DZLU representative had attended a meeting on 8/23/18 convened by Lee Hepner, Legislative Aide to Supervisor Peskin, regarding his office’s work drafting proposed legislation on “Demolition Controls”. This was an outgrowth of the Planning Department’s earlier work on development of a “Residential Expansion Threshold”, an effort that has not advanced.
Original efforts focused on creating a clearer definition of demolition, especially alterations so extensive as to be considered “tantamount to demolition.” In addition, an original aim was to address large home expansions that conflicted with the scale of their neighborhoods.
The current legislative effort aims to address these issues, as well as to govern residential unit mergers, and to significantly broaden the definition of “major alteration” such that it would fall under the new proposed demolition control framework. Requirements for Conditional Use (CU) approval, and required findings would be expanded.
While recognizing the need to improve demolition definitions, prevent abuses and protect historic resources, several questions were raised, warranting ongoing discussion:
– Has outreach represented a diverse range of viewpoints, including planning, design and real estate organizations, and housing advocates?
– Does bundling multiple issues into one legislative package make full analysis more challenging vs. a more incremental effort?
– Has there been discussion of the tradeoff between accommodating families with children in larger units vs. placing additional controls on unit mergers or on expansion of unit size over 10%?
– The percentage expansion that would trigger the proposed controls has not been defined. Addition of one floor appears to fall under the new expanded definition of demolition, regardless of context or current zoning and guidelines. What is appropriate?
– What are the tradeoffs between expanded CU requirements and a desire by many to streamline the process, and a recognition of the impacts on housing costs?
c. VAN NESS CORRIDOR NEIGHBORHOOD COUNCIL — The American Buddhist Center made a presentation to the VNCNC of its proposed new temple at 1750 Van Ness. The design was favorably received as architecturally attractive and sensitive to the adjacent St. Luke’s Church and the adjacent residential building at 1776 Sacramento.
d. PROPOSED AMENDMENTS TO PLANNING CODE ON OVERHANGS AND BAY WINDOWS — A DZLU representative attended Planning’s 9/5 presentation on architectural features that provide sun shading or certain configurations of bay windows which project over streets or alleys and that are not covered in the current code. Dimensional limits have been restored in the proposal, which had been a primary concern and it is now scheduled to go to the Historic Preservation Commission on 9/19 and to the Planning Commission on 10/4.
e. SF BEAUTIFUL AWARDS PROGRAM — SF Beautiful is inviting nominations of projects, groups or initiatives for awards in various categories. Nomination deadline is 10/8/18.